1. ITV Report

Nursery in retirement home 'lifts residents spirits'

The two generations developed a bond over the course of the experiment. Photo: ITV West Country

Young children in Bristol have been trying out a new nursery based in a retirement home.

For six weeks, ten three year-olds and four year-olds attended a temporary nursery in St Monica Trust in Westbury-on-Trym.

It's part of an experiment to see what impact spending time with children has on pensioners.

The children say they enjoyed the experience of learning from their elders. Credit: ITV News
The younger and older generations enjoy activities like reading together, Credit: ITV News

The children's nursery was moved into the retirement home, giving the two generations a chance to interact on a daily basis.

Once the children developed a bond with the residents, they started to have regular conversations and discussions.

Parents say that their children's happiness was clear.

As well as children saying that they enjoyed the experience, there were benefits for the adults too.

It was a really good experiment. To begin with there were definitely nerves on both sides and after a few weeks there was just this huge bond that we're hoping to continue.

The effects on everybody - the spirit, everyone was really happy. The older adults really understood the children and really got down to their level. As much as the older adults helped the younger children, doing up their coats and tying their shoelaces, I think the children brought out the best in the adults and there's definitely smiles all around.

– Emma Louise Morris, Lead Practitioner
According to organisers, both adults and children learnt a lot through the experience. Credit: ITV News

A documentary following the progress of the experiment airs on Tuesday night on Channel 4.